GDP grew at the fastest rate in the Euro area in Q4, exceeding market expectations and meaning the economy grew 12.2% last year—also the fastest rate in the Euro area. The manufacturing sector contributed to the strong Q4 reading. Heading into Q1, our panelists expect GDP growth to slow. High frequency data for the quarter thus far has been upbeat—compared to Q4, inflation is down and consumer confidence and the Composite PMI are both up—but headwinds such as a slowing global economy and rising interest rates are expected to more than offset these tailwinds. In other news, on 21 February the government announced EUR 1.3 billion in further cost-of-living assistance to households and extended a temporary reduction in the VAT rate for the hospitality sector through the summer season. These measures should boost demand ahead.
Ireland Retail Sales (ann. var. %) Data
|Retail Sales (ann. var. %)||3.8||3.7||2.1||-2.6||10.1|